Citizens express their hopes for the future at high-level workshop on Viet Nam’s development priorities

20 Mar 2013

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Ha Noi – The findings from UN-supported consultations with Vietnamese citizens on the future they want were presented today at a high-level workshop, co-chaired by the Government and the United Nations in Viet Nam. During the workshop, participants also discussed key development challenges and priorities for Viet Nam post-2015.
With the deadline for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) approaching within three years, the UN is working with governments, civil society, academia and the private sector on priorities for the next global development agenda. The UN Secretary-General has stressed the need for an inclusive and transparent process to ensure that the new agenda is informed by the voices of people from all parts of the world.

As part of this, the UN is facilitating national consultations in more than 70 countries, including Viet Nam, to hear directly from citizens on their priorities for the future. Viet Nam was selected given its MDG achievements and recent status as a middle-income country.

“It is vital that the post-2015 development framework reflects the world in which we live today and takes into account issues that were not addressed in the MDGs when they were adopted in 2000. At the same time, we must not forget the unfinished MDG agenda. While Viet Nam has indeed made impressive national progress on the MDGs, efforts are still needed to see that they are achieved in very village, city and province. With just 1,000 days left before the MDGs expire, now is the time for Viet Nam to accelerate progress on those MDGs that have not been achieved, while using its experiences to actively contribute to the global discussion on the post-2015 agenda,” said Pratibha Mehta, UN Resident Coordinator in Viet Nam.

In agreement with the Government, the UN in Viet Nam decided to focus on consulting groups that are not heard very often in the development debate. Eight groups were selected. These include young people, older persons, ethnic minorities, rural poor, urban poor, people with disabilities, people living with HIV and the private sector.

Each stakeholder group consulted voiced particular challenges and aspirations relating to their group. However, several themes were also similar. Common themes running across the groups include the need for participation; a more equal society; quality employment and stable jobs; universal access to affordable health care; and quality education and vocational training.

During the workshop, an innovative survey known as My World, the United Nations global survey for a better world, was also launched. MY World provides an opportunity for citizens around the world to have a say in what development priorities world leaders should include in the next development framework.

In a special video message for the MY World survey, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon encouraged the public to “Vote and tell us what issues matter most to you and your family. Make a difference. Mark a difference!”

As part of the consultation process in Viet Nam, between November 2012 and January 2013 over 1,300 men, women, boys and girls were consulted on their vision for the future. More than half of the participants in all the consultations were women. Consultation events took place in both key cities and the countryside, in more than 11 provinces across Viet Nam.

The findings from the consultations in Viet Nam will be consolidated and included in a final report by the UN in Viet Nam, which will reflect on the opportunities and challenges for Viet Nam with a post-2015 framework. The report will also serve as input for a global UN report on ideas for a post-2015 development agenda.

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